TWENTY YEARS OF DEMAGOGUERY

By | June 28, 2008

He made a prediction and it did not happen. Fair enough, that is how science progresses, but any relationship between the Hansen phenomenon and science is rather remote. His latest calling down of fire and brimstone is upon the wicked oil executives, who are allegedly stoking up infidel opposition to the true gospel of the global warming catastrophe to come. That this is not true is evident from the greener-than-thou advertisements put out by that industry. They know a good racket when they see one and if there are a few billion taxpayers’ dollars on offer they want their share of them. They are, however, likened to the tobacco giants who so misled the public.

Yes those were liars; but so were their opponents, led by the EPA, and they turned out to be better at it. The current big lie is that all the sceptical commentators are in the pay of the nefarious industry.

Hansen’s answer to it all is to call for an inquisition (he is a bit late into that game, by about five years). “May you have what you wish for” is an ancient curse and it would be satisfying to see Hansen have his day in court.

The reason that Monty Python’s dead parrot so rapidly became a dead metaphor is that it encapsulates the modern political phenomenon of lying with a straight face, when all parties involved know that it is a lie (It’s not a constitution, it is just a treaty). So now, when we are told that Global Warming isn’t dead, it’s just restin’, we accept it as just a normal part of the political process. Formerly it would have been regarded as an example of the fifth of Langmuir’s laws of bad science.

It is quite extraordinary that this sort of activity should fester within the world’s most notable scientific and engineering organisation.

Anyone who has had the misfortune to have been reluctantly involved with such a weirdo will feel the embarrassment for all those genuine professionals whose ingenuity, among many other achievements, put a man on the moon. They obviously tried to subject him to some sort of control, quite properly in a tax-funded, non-academic institution, which led to his wild claim to being censored. He must be the least censored person on the planet, thanks to his friends in high places.

Perhaps the world will one day be grateful to the brave band of volunteers, who have at last got together to provide an audit of the activities of such fanatics. Owing to the efforts of the likes of Steve McIntyre and Anthony Watts, we have been able to penetrate the unscientific veil of secrecy behind which they brew their spells and hokum. Not only are the standards of software production and maintenance way, way below the standards officially embraced by NASA, some of the procedures are unbelievably bizarre, including even the Orwellian process of systematically rewriting the past.

A phenomenon indeed!

WSJ